With a final score of 49-7, Lakewood lost to John A. Holmes ending the season for the Leopards. While the night started with fireworks from the Aces’ field, it ended in disappointment for Lakewood.
“Like I told the kids, one game does not define the season,” commented head coach Jason Lewis, a bit of emotion entering his voice. “It just wasn’t our night.”
The offense for the Leopards began the first quarter struggling against the Aces’ brutal defense. The Leopards spent much of the first quarter trying to hold off the Aces, while Lakewood’s Jahdon Smith earned good yard gain during the first. Smith’s effort wasn’t enough to turn the tide.
Going into the second quarter, behind by seven, the Leopards had their best chance of the night to mount a comeback. While their defense was strong, the offense for the Leopards was unable to break through the Aces’ ranks. Then a quick move by the Aces lead to Holmes getting an impressive 74-yard touchdown bringing the score to 13-0.
The Leopards continued attempting to break the Aces’ defense, which resulted in the loss of the ball to the Aces after another fourth down. Holmes once more slipped through Lakewood’s defense, resulting in another touchdown and two point conversion bringing the score to 21-0. While Lakewood’s defense held strong, their offense was unable to score throughout the first half of the game and when combined with Holmes’ relentless attempts, they continued to fall further behind.
With the second half beginning at 42-0, the mercy rule was put into affect and the Leopards were now battling against time while trying to get back into the game. Time wouldn’t be the only problem, as the Aces scored a final touchdown during the beginning of the final quarter.
Lakewood’s Smith gained great yards for the Leopards with it being followed by Jameek Johnson gaining even more yards. These gains soon became a gradual push to the Aces endzone resulting in a five yard rushing touchdown by Smith bringing the score to 49-7.
While Lakewood’s season ended there, it was far from a bad season. They tied the school’s record for victories and setting a new one for shutout games won.
Rushing leaders were Smith with 15 rushes for 78 yards, Johnson five for 19 and Cameron Sessoms had four for 11 yards.
Defensively Tristan Holmes led with eight tackles a sack for eight yards loss and one fumble recovery, Luke Brewer had 12 tackles, Jaylin Torres and Jawaun Johnson with five tackles each and Dylan Ivey with four tackles.
An emotional gathering of the team, coaches and even some family members met on the field for a final talk from the coaches. They congratulated their players for their hard work and dedication, praising their spirit and even saying they would be a team they’d use as an example for years to come.
“I’m very proud of these kids,” Lewis concluded. “I couldn’t have picked a better team to represent Lakewood High School.”
Reach Chris Froat at email@example.com. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter @SampsonInd.